A patient with herpes simplex virus encephalitis (HSV) has been admitted to the ICU. What medication would the nurse expect the physician to order for the treatment of this disease process?

Answer Explanation: Acyclovir (Zovirax) or ganciclovir (Cytovene), antiviral agents, are the medications of choice in the treatment of HSV. The mode of action is the inhibition of viral DNA replication. To prevent relapse, treatment would continue for up to 3 weeks. Cyclosporine is an immunosuppressant and antirheumatic. Cyclobenzaprine is a centrally acting skeletal muscle relaxant. Ampicillin, an antibiotic, is ineffective against viruses.

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